The Garo Cupcake

Written by Jamie on April 28, 2012


Think spicy exotic sweetness: Ginger pear spiced cupcakes, filled with a miso soft caramel core, topped with chocolate italian meringue buttercream frosting and garnished with crystallized ginger.  This cupcake was engineered to honor the guy who eats unusual exotic foods and taught me new things about exotic citrus.  Considering I grew up in Florida, I thought I knew citrus....until I met Garo.

This recipe makes 24 cupcakes.



  • 2 1/2 C cake flour, sifted
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 C sugar
  • 1 C unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 C sour cream
  • 1/2 cup crystallized ginger, diced
  • 2 pears
  • 2 tsp Pumpkin pie seasoning


  • 3/4 cup (180 ml) heavy cream
  • 2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp Miso
  • 1/2 cup (160 g) brown rice syrup (I used Lundberg brown rice syrup, purchased at Whole Foods)
  • 1 cup (200 g) sugar
  • 4 tablespoons (60 g), total, salted butter, cubed, at room temperature
  • Wax paper



  • 5 egg whites
  • pinch salt
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar (if not using a copper bowl)
  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) castor sugar


  • 8 ounces (1 cup) castor sugar
  • 1/4 cup water


  • 4 oz chocolate, melted and cooled
  • Butter, 1 lb., unsalted, and soft
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup diced crystallized ginger (for topping) 



  1. Miso Soft Caramel

    Follow directions for the Fleur de Sel Caramels, however make the following changes:

    1. Use vanilla extract instead of Jameson
    2. Use 1 tsp miso instead of Fleur de Sel
    3. During the second heating phase (after cream and sugar mixtures are mixed), take the mixture to 240-244 degrees instead of 256.  This will allow the mixture to be less stiff and more liquidy
  2. Chocolate Frosting

    1. Follow directions for the Jameson Italian Meringue buttercream
      1. Vanilla extract can be substituted, but feel free to live dangerously and use Jameson or another liquor.
      2. Add 4 oz of cooled melted chocolate after the butter has been mixed in.
  3. Ginger Pear Cupcakes

    1. Remove core from pear, chop into large chunks and food process into small pieces
      1. Place processed pears into paper towel inside of a colander, and allow excess juice to drain
    2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees, and prepare muffin tins with paper liners for 24
    3. Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, Pumpkin Pie spice, and salt in a medium-sized bowl and set aside.
    4. In a large bowl, with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the eggs and sugar for about 2 minutes, or until light and creamy.
      1. Add the butter and vanilla and beat on low speed for about 1 minute, or until well blended.
      2. Beat in the dry ingredients on low speed until blended.
      3. Add the sour cream and beat until smooth and well blended.
      4. Fold in the pears and crystallized ginger (1/2 cup)
    5. Fill cupcake liners about halfway full.
    6. Bake at 325 F for 20 - 28 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean and the tops are firm.
      1. Rotate pans frequently The_garo
  4. Assembly

    1. When cupcakes have cooled, use an apple corer to remove a slim cylinder from the center 
    2. Fill with caramel
    3. Pipe the chocolate frosting on top, and garnish with crystallized ginger
    4. Don't forget to store the cupcakes in the fridge if not consuming within 4 hours
      1. If stored in fridge, allow cupcakes to sit out for 2 hours prior to consumption.



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